13 research outputs found

    Biologics May Prevent Cardiovascular Events in Rheumatoid Arthritis by Inhibiting Coronary Plaque Formation and Stabilizing High-Risk Lesions.

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    ObjectiveTo evaluate whether biologic disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs) decrease cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk in rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and whether biologic DMARDs might have a beneficial effect on coronary plaque formation or progression.MethodsIn this single-center observational cohort study, 150 patients underwent computed tomographic angiography for evaluation of coronary atherosclerosis (total, noncalcified, mixed/calcified, and low-attenuation plaque); 101 had repeat assessments within a mean ± SD of 6.9 ± 0.3 years to evaluate plaque progression. All CVD events were prospectively recorded, including cardiac death, myocardial infarction, unstable angina, revascularization, stroke, claudication, and hospitalization for heart failure. The Framingham-D'Agostino score was used to assess cardiovascular risk. The segment stenosis score was used to measure plaque burden. Odds ratios (ORs) with 95% confidence intervals (95% CIs) were calculated.ResultsAfter adjustment for the segment stenosis score, the Framingham-D'Agostino score, and time-varying Disease Activity Score in 28 joints using the C-reactive protein level using marginal structural models, current biologic DMARD use was associated with lower long-term CVD risk (OR 0.15 [95% CI 0.04-0.60]). Noncalcified and low-attenuation plaque presence moderated the effect of biologic DMARDs on CVD risk; specifically, biologic DMARD use was associated with lower CVD risk in patients with noncalcified or low-attenuation plaque at baseline (OR 0.21 [95% CI 0.04-0.99] and OR 0.08 [95% CI 0.01-0.70], respectively), but not in those without noncalcified or low-attenuation plaque. Per-segment plaque progression analyses showed that biologic DMARD exposure was associated with transition of noncalcified to mixed/calcified plaque (OR 4.00 [95% CI 1.05-15.32]). Biologic DMARD exposure predicted a lower likelihood of new plaque forming in segments without plaque among patients without mixed/calcified plaque in other coronary segments (OR 0.40 [95% CI 0.17-0.93]), but not among those with calcification. Biologic DMARD treatment also predicted low-attenuation plaque loss (P = 0.042).ConclusionOur findings indicate that in RA, biologic DMARD use is associated with reduced CVD risk, protective calcification of noncalcified lesions, and lower likelihood of new plaque formation in patients with early atherosclerosis

    Multidimensional Model of Disability and Role Functioning in Rheumatoid Arthritis

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    ObjectiveTo examine a model addressing the roles of rheumatoid arthritis (RA) disease burden, mood disturbance, and disability as determinants of impairments in role functioning.MethodsIn a cross-sectional design, 103 RA patients recruited from the community to participate in a clinical trial completed assessments of self-assessed disease burden (total joint pain and disease activity), mood disturbance (Center for Epidemiological Studies Depression Scale depressed mood, somatic symptoms, lack of positive affect, and interpersonal problems), disability (Health Assessment Questionnaire disability index gross and fine motor), and role functioning (Short Form 36 health survey physical and social). Structural equation modeling (SEM) was used to examine direct and indirect mechanisms linking disease burden to role functioning.ResultsSEM results indicated that the model had excellent fit: S-Bχ(2)(30) = 38.59, P = 0.135; comparative fit index = 0.977, standardized root mean residual = 0.062, and root mean square error of approximation = 0.053. Mediational analyses demonstrated that, while disease burden was associated with poor role functioning, its effects were jointly mediated by mood disturbance and disability. After the effects of mood disturbance and disability were taken into account, the effect of disease burden on role functioning was not significant.ConclusionThe results indicate that mood disturbance and disability may serve as important pathways through which RA disease burden affects role functioning. Future longitudinal research is suggested to replicate these findings and further explore the mediational mechanisms examined in this study

    Statins influence the relationship between ATP-binding cassette A1 membrane transporter-mediated cholesterol efflux capacity and coronary atherosclerosis in rheumatoid arthritis

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    Objectives: Cholesterol efflux capacity (CEC) is the main antiatherogenic function of high-density lipoprotein (HDL). ATP-binding-cassette A1 (ABCA1) membrane transporter initiates cholesterol export from arterial macrophages to pre-β HDL particles fostering their maturation; in turn, those accept cholesterol through ABCG1-mediated export. Impaired pre-β HDL maturation may disrupt the collaborative function of the two transporters and adversely affect atherosclerosis. Statins exert atheroprotective functions systemically and locally on plaque. We here evaluated associations between ABCA1-CEC, coronary atherosclerosis and cardiovascular risk and the influence of statins on those relationships in rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Methods: Evaluation with computed tomography angiography was undertaken in 140 patients and repeated in 99 after 6.9 ± 0.3 years. Events comprising cardiovascular death, acute coronary syndromes, stroke, claudication, revascularization and heart failure were recorded. ABCA1-CEC and ABCG1-CEC were evaluated in J774A.1 macrophages and Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cells respectively and expressed as percentage of effluxed over total intracellular cholesterol. Covariates in all cardiovascular event risk and plaque outcome models included atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ASCVD) risk score and high-density lipoprotein cholesterol. Results: ABCA1-CEC negatively correlated with ABCG1-CEC (r = −0.167, p = 0.049). ABCA1-CEC associated with cardiovascular risk (adjusted hazard ratio 2.05 [95%CI 1.20–3.48] per standard deviation [SD] increment). There was an interaction of ABCA1-CEC with time-varying statin use (p = 0.038) such that current statin use inversely associated with risk only in patients with ABCA1-CEC below the upper tertile. ABCA1-CEC had no main effect on plaque or plaque progression; instead, ABCA1-CEC (per SD) associated with fewer baseline total plaques (adjusted rate ratio [aRR] 0.81, [95%CI 0.65–1.00]), noncalcified plaques (aRR 0.78 [95%CI 0.61–0.98]), and vulnerable low-attenuation plaques (aRR 0.41 [95%CI 0.23–0.74]) in statin users, and more low-attenuation plaques (aRR 1.91 [95%CI 1.18–3.08]) in nonusers (p-for-interaction = 0.018, 0.011, 0.025 and < 0.001 respectively). Moreover, ABCA1-CEC (per SD) associated with greater partially/fully-calcified plaque progression (adjusted odds ratio 3.07 [95%CI 1.20–7.86]) only in patients not exposed to statins during follow-up (p-for-interaction = 0.009). Conclusion: In patients with RA, higher ABCA1-CEC may reflect a proatherogenic state, associated with enhanced cardiovascular risk. Statin use may unmask the protective impact of ABCA1-mediated cholesterol efflux on plaque formation, progression and cardiovascular risk